Civil Engineering

Projects in the field of civil engineering are becoming more and more complex. On the one hand, the spectrum of potential technical solutions is becoming ever wider thanks to technological innovations. On the other hand, the context of these projects is also becoming very complex. Consider for example an urbanised area with many – and often conflicting – constraints from a management or administrative perspective.

Because of this increasing complexity, the market requires highly qualified civil engineering designers who are experts in the various technical and non-technical aspects of conflicting issues. Furthermore, the market requires employees who are skilled in working in a multidisciplinary design team and knows how to approach complex issues and arrive at practical solutions.

  • Aspari cooperation

    ASPARi - short for Asphalt Paving Research & Innovation - is a cooperative network of organisations that work together in research projects and technology development to improve the performance of the asphalt road construction industry. The issues around more professional approaches to asphalt paving became relevant and pressing due to changes in the business environment. In 2007 year the ASPARi founders agreed to bundle the ongoing activities to pave the way forward to a highly professionalised asphalt construction industry. ASPARi aims to perform the asphalt paving process by combining the knowledge and experience of the asphalt industry, with the knowledge present at the University of Twente. The proud ASPARi founders are:

    • Ballast Nedam
    • BAM Infra
    • Boskalis
    • Dura Vermeer Infra
    • Heijmans Infra
    • KWS
    • Rijkswaterstaat
    • Roelofs
    • Strukton
    • Twentse Weg- en Waterbouw (TWW)
    • Van Gelder

    Together with the University of Twente, the ASPARi team focuses on innovation and performance in the asphalt paving process. The research is aimed at improving quality and consistent reduction of quality variability in the hot mix asphalt (HMA) paving process, and consciously working towards professionalising it through the use of digital technologies, developing innovative work methods and a distinctly bottom-up approach by improving the competencies and skills of those closest to the construction process. To achieve this, the research team is currently involved in several initiatives involving key role players in the road construction industry, the national roads authorities, training schools, research institutes and international partners.

    EngD projects at the University of Twente

    The EngD (Engineering Doctorate) programme is a 2 year post-Master’s designer programme at the University of Twente. During these two years you follow a tailor made design programme with a combination of education (50%) and working on a design project (50%). In consultation with ASPARi, this tailor made programme will be designed to educate you to be able to design high level, creative and renewing designs for complex issues with a multidisciplinary character.

    In the short term, ASPARi needs suitable candidates for upcoming projects of a technological design nature, with a MSc in Civil Engineering, Computer Sciences, or a related Engineering discipline. Research themes for the ASPARi 5.0 phase are:

    • Improvement of construction process control
    • Monitoring and durability of constructed asphalt roads
    • Digitalisation of construction and related processes
    • Education and training

    For more information, visit the website or contact S.R. Miller via email or telephone: +31 53 489 5886. General information about EngD programmes you can find at

    Our offer

    We offer a full-time contract for 24 months.  Also, the University of Twente provides excellent facilities for professional and personal development, a holiday allowance and an end-of-year bonus. On successfully completing the programme, you will receive a certified degree. You will be entitled to use the academic degree Professional Doctorate in Engineering (EngD) and will be registered as a Technological Designer in the Dutch register kept by the Royal Institution of Engineers in the Netherlands (KIVI). 

    Candidate profile

    We are searching for the best MSc graduated candidates with a demonstrable affinity with design and multidisciplinary assignments. Besides, you must have the ambition and talent to accelerate in finding innovative educational solutions for a rather traditional, largely work experience based road construction industry. Important professional skills are Dutch and English language skills, communication and interpersonal skills, teamwork, initiative and self-reflection. Prior knowledge in curriculum development, innovation and implementation, teaching and learning with ICT and software development will be helpful to successfully complete the project, but can also be part of the educational programme. An interview will be part of the selection procedure.


    For this project, you can send an open application by clicking the positions at Please send your application with a curriculum vitae, a letter of motivation, a list with grades of courses attended, references and, if applicable, a list of publications you may have.

EngD programme in Civil Engineering

The purpose of the EngD programme is to educate trainees who will be the 'new employees' in the field of civil engineering. The programme focuses on solving design issues within the main themes of water management, transport engineering and construction engineering.

During the programme, you transfer results into technological innovation in industry and society. Examples of design issues include the accessibility of urban areas, high-quality public transport, risk management, flood protection under the influence of climate change, urban renewal, asset management for infrastructure or complex buildings (e.g. hospitals), underground construction, multifunctional land use, etc.

Employers of graduates of this EngD programme are often the organizations where the trainees do their design assignments. The branches of these organizations vary from government to engineers of consultants and contractors. Furthermore, large research institutes can be clients for design-orientated issues and therefore an employer of EngD graduates.


The two years lasting EngD programme in Civil Engineering combines academic research in a professional context with education in a range of related subjects. It consists of three blocks: a block of professional development, a block with in-depth and broadening courses and a technological design project. These blocks with a total of 120 EC can run parallel to each other.

The block with in-depth and broadening courses can partly be tailored to the technological design project. Gained skills in professional development and gained knowledge from in-depth and broadening courses are employed in the design project. During the design project, you transfer results into technological innovation in industry or society.


The Professional Development courses are intended to improve professional skills and advance career opportunities. Besides, the University of Twente actively stimulates the entrepreneurial spirit of its employees. The course in Professional Effectiveness is compulsory, and others are electives (in consultation with your supervisors). The total study load of the professional development courses is 6-10 EC. See for an overview of professional development courses.


The compulsory block includes two compulsory courses:


The education block carries a total study load of at least 45 EC and comprises a compulsory block and an elective block.


The compulsory block includes:

Elective courses

The elective block of at least 18 EC allows you to extend your competencies in a specific direction as further preparation for the design project. For the composition of this elective block, together with your (daily) supervisors, you can select courses which are of interest for the technological design project. Elective courses can either be master courses or post-master courses at the University of Twente, national research schools, Capita Selecta courses, conference visits (incl. paper and/or poster), summer schools, in-company courses, or courses at another 4TU location.   


The design project will be defined in close consultation with the organisation or institution which you will be working for. The project can arise from a design question from the organisation/institution or from the valorisation of PhD research into which the industry/government has an inquiry to. The programme ensures that the design project is innovative and complex, contains sufficient design aspects and is sufficiently multidisciplinary. The design project is individual in the sense that you have your own project. Because of the complex and multidisciplinary character of the project, in most projects, you will work together with colleagues. The University of Twente ensures that there is a clear part of the design, for which you are responsible and for which you will be judged.

Target groups

The EngD-programme in Civil Engineering focuses on these target groups:

The EngD programme focuses on talented graduates with an interest in designing solutions for complex civil engineering problems. This means that not everyone will be allowed and that the selection for this track will be strict.

Selection criteria

Candidates will be tested based on these selection criteria:

Candidates with a non-Dutch qualification and who have not had secondary and tertiary education in English can only be admitted with an IELTS-test showing a total band score of at least 6.5, internet TOEFL test (TOEFL-iBT) showing a score of at least 90, or a Cambridge CAE-C (CPE).

The selection will be done by the EngD-selection committee.


If you are interested in this EngD track Civil Engineering, read more about how to apply.


  • Fatemeh Mahmoudi

    Hi, my name is Fatemeh and have taken the EngD programme in Civil Engineering. After my MSc “Geo-information Science and Earth Observation for Environmental Modelling” at the faculty ITC, I chose to take a EngD programme because I like to have a job in industry rather than in academia. Therefore it is interesting for that this post master education leads graduates to the industry.

    My project

    The title of my project was ““Develop/improve a safer moling or ground piercing method for fiber to the home installation”. In my project, the company Fiber4all -which provides houses with fiberglass- used a tool which is called racket. Through using this tool instead of digging up the gardens of clients they make a hole underground for new connections. Even though using this tool is easy and convenient, sometimes the racket hits other underground networks which is dangerous. Also the repair of these networks is costly and takes time. In this project I am looking for the main causes of this damage and finding a proper solution to prevent them.

    Dealing with a real problem

    What I liked the most about this program is dealing with a real problem and finding a practical solution for it. We learned to analyse the problem and find a creative and practical solution for it, while during a master programme the project might end up with a theoretical solution.

  • Niels Vossebeld

    “What I like the most about the programme is the tailor made character of it. There is a lot of freedom in choices for all parties.

    Another big advantage - compared to a PhD - is that the EngD programme is shorter. In addition I think it better fits to my pragmatic mind set.

    Of course I could choose for a regular job or a traineeship in the professional field after obtaining my Master’s degree, but the EngD attracts me because of the knowledge based approach. With the knowledge obtained I can distinguish myself."


If you have any further questions about the EngD programme in Civil Engineering, please contact programme director dr. S.R. Miller: